Elkhart mayor-elect Rod Roberson gets sworn in, talks first 100 days

NOW: Elkhart mayor-elect Rod Roberson gets sworn in, talks first 100 days

ELKHART, Ind. – New Year, new Mayor. Mayor-elect Rod Roberson has officially been sworn into his position.

He ran on the platform of “Building Elkhart together” and won the seat with 56% of the vote over Republican Dave Miller.

Elkhart city voters had many issues in mind when casting their ballot back in November’s general election, like the Tolson Center and public safety. All of which Elkhart mayor-elect Rod Roberson says he’s keeping in mind heading into the New Year.

ABC57 got the chance to speak to Roberson about his first 100 days of being the mayor of Elkhart but he said already starting to get things going.

“There are a lot of projects we currently have in the funnel that we want to make sure to accelerate,” Roberson said.

His plan for the first 100 days reflects what voters were concerned about going into electing the new mayor.

“Whether it’s the river district and making sure we have the appropriate pieces in place to continue that process or the Tolson Center and what we want to begin to accomplish there with the help of the Chamber and the Foundation.”

This will also include some road projects.

When it comes to public safety, he also has some things in mind.

“I want to make sure we go into a hiring process with the police chief and all public safety quite frankly,” he said.

He said he wants to follow through with the advice the consultant company gave to the police department on police policies like use of force and body cameras.

“In order to provide transparency and accountability for the police department,” he said. “But also working with the citizens to bring this police department to a place where we are always engaging issues together.”

However, he tells ABC57 his biggest goal for the first 100 days is to transition government.

“I want to make sure that we have the appropriate people in place to begin what I know to become unparalleled service,” he said.

After being sworn in, he announced the Chief of Staff as Dayna Bennett, the City Attorney as John Esper and the Engineer as Mike Machlan just as a teaser for what is to come.

And for those who came to the ceremony, there were high hopes for the future.

“They need to have some believable first steps, they need to build trust and then I hope then that the accolades will push him forward into greater heights, bigger challenges that will move this city forward,” David Henke, an Elkhart City Council Member said.

Everyone left on a pretty positive note, excited for the future of Elkhart in these next 4 years.

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